Elon Musk, Mark Zuckerberg, Jeff Bezos, Steve Jobs… What do all these people have in common, apart from being the most successful entrepreneurs with the highest net worth in the world?
It turns out, all of them are the ‘entrepreneurial’ type according to the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator. Maybe… you are too?
Let’s find out which features these guys have are known for, and how to become more like them. Read on!
What Is The Myers–Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI)?
The Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) is an introspective questionnaire aimed at identifying how people perceive the world and make decisions.
It is one of the most widely used personality tests in the world. Companies of all sizes and specialisations use it to access their future employees, weed out the ‘unworthy’, and spot the goldmine of an employee from afar.
Before you roll your eyes at this, have a look at the hard facts. The stats on the MBTI usage are truly astonishing:
The MBTI generates over $2 billion in revenue yearly, with every one in five companies on the Fortune 100 list, McKinsey & Company, the CIA, the Department of State using it.
There’s a reason why all these companies are so adamant on using the test. Research suggests that some Myers-Briggs personality types are more prone to be successful at entrepreneurship and business management than others.
The test uses four vectors:
- Introversion — extraversion,
- Sensing — intuition,
- Thinking — feeling,
- Judging — perceiving.
Based on the category which you fall under, you are assigned one of the 16 acronym test results, like "ENTP" or "ISTJ". The majority of successful entrepreneurs predominantly fall within four types: ENTPs, ESTJs, ENTJs, INTJs.
But chances are, you have already known what it is. It’s so popular, an average of 2.5 million people takes it every year. If you haven’t yet…
Is Someone’s Personality a Reliable Indicator of Their Entrepreneurial Success?
Millennials love quizzes. It’s a scientifically proven fact… maybe. Even if it’s not, I can’t come up with any other explanation as to why Buzzfeed quizzes still exist and thrive. I’m not the one to judge, though. I, too, have looked up what kind of bread I am based on my dream holiday destination. Guilty as charged!
Millennials love personality tests so much, they have found a way to incorporate them into their recruiting processes. Naturally, this caused a lot of arguments from between them and more “traditionalist” recruiters. There’s an heated debate as to whether the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator can be considered reliable enough to use for serious purposes and not just for fun.
Using MBTI to access candidates’ soft skills is associated with an array of different issues.
- It’s self-administered and introspective. The questions on the test are self-explanatory, which implies you can foresee which result you will get based on how you answer. You can adjust your answers - consciously or unconsciously - to fit your intentions.
- It’s based on binary choices. Even if you answer the questions with a heart on your sleeve, the results are likely not to be 100% accurate. The binary options aren’t very successful at describing the reality we know. Jung himself said: ‘There is no such thing as a pure extravert or a pure introvert. Such a man would be in the lunatic asylum’.
- It only provides positive results. Positive adjectives limit the list of terms the MBTI uses. You won’t find words like ‘lazy’, or ‘unmotivated’ among the descriptions it provides. It’s been created to flatter the respondents rather than to categorise them fairly.
"Every individual is an exception to the rule," - Carl Jung.
However, NetHunt isn’t here to make a scandalous statement about the validity of the method and have the last say in the conversation. Instead, let’s talk about the characteristics that ‘entrepreneurial’ Myers-Briggs personality types have, what we can pick up from them, and which tools are most helpful to them for getting the job done.
ENTP: The Debater
Debaters are often called the Devil’s Advocates of the MBTI types. They are gifted conversationalists and can come up with a valid and convincing argument on the spot, even if they don’t stand for the belief they are arguing for.
The list of the most famous ENTPs includes Walt Disney, Steve Wozniak, Tyrion Lannister, Irene Adler, Jim Halpert.
ENTPs are quick-witted, charming and exceptionally outgoing… when they want to be. Sometimes people see them as over-argumentative self-absorbed chatterboxes, and rightfully so; there’s nothing Debaters love more than a good conversation. One way or another, they’re great at communicating their ideas and have a lot of progressive proposals.
They don’t like to be limited by standards and norms and are often the ones to think outside of the box. They value freedom above anything. They not only enjoy the freedom of thought themselves, but they also expect others to exercise it too. Debaters’ leadership style is laid-back and daring; They see a good argument, encouraging everyone around them to challenge them.
If not tamed, this freedom can quickly turn into chaos. One of the biggest weaknesses of ENTPs is the inability to focus and organise themselves. Unlike other personality types on the list, Debaters get bored easily and often overestimate their ability to keep track of their numerous tasks.
The best tool to help ENTPs to stay focused and manage their workload effectively is Jira.
Jira is a software product initially developed by Atlassian for bug tracking that is now widely used for agile project management. Jira allows you to create kanban and scrum boards, both of which are essential for fair and productive workload distribution. This platform ENTPs to structure their tasks by organising them in a hierarchical order, creating subtasks to break down large issues into more manageable ones, and linking tasks with each other.
Jira is free for up to 10 users. The standard plan starts at $10 per month.
ESTJ: The Executive
ESTJs are conventional leaders with a far more traditional approach to business than that of ENTPs. The Executives, also known as the Supervisor type, are masters of managing teams, delegating tasks, and distributing them among the team members. They have a clear vision and are big on planning - ESTJs have no trouble setting strict deadlines and meeting them without any problems. In fact, time management is one of the most well-developed skills for ESTJs.
The list of the most famous ESTJs include Jeff Bezos, Alan Sugar, Frank Sinatra.
The main feature that makes ESTJ talented entrepreneurs is their straightforwardness. They don’t sugarcoat their opinions and do everything they can to get to the point as quickly as possible. This is partially why their projects are timed and are always on time; they don’t fiddle around. They can also boast outstanding retrospective skills, learning quickly and effectively to apply their knowledge. The longer an ESTJ runs a business, the more structures and organised it becomes as they rely heavily on the experience they gain.
At the same time, this is what makes ESTJs vulnerable. Despite having a vision, they are not visionary. Instead, they’re executives. They’re bound to their past, so it’s difficult for them to introduce revolutionary ideas. They are limited to the things they already know well and are less susceptible to new concepts. Not only do they find it challenging to tackle the unknown themselves, but they also restrict their teams’ creativity and make them obey strict rules.
ESTJs can benefit from tools that allow better creativity and a more relaxed approach to task-solving. The most useful tools for ESTJs are the ones that stimulate brain activity and prompt them to open up to new ideas. An example of such a tool is a collaborative mind mapping app. Brainstorming for innovative solutions is one of the most challenging tasks for established ESTJs, so they need something to help them with that.
A fun and helpful tool for ESTJ leaders is Sketchboard.
Sketchboard is an online application that combines the features of mind maps, real-time whiteboards and vision boards. You can sketch, add pictures and text boxes, link them together and let your creativity flourish. The best thing is that it revolves around ideas and not looks, so you and your team can collaboratively produce a groundbreaking piece!
Sketchboard prices start from $8 per month for solo performers and $16 per month for teams of collaborators.
ENTJ: The Commander
ENTJs are the big bosses of all the MBTI types. They are extraverted, which makes them charismatic, outgoing and inspirational leaders. They are great at avoiding conflicts and generally have a way with their words - they can easily communicate their ideas and make themselves heard.
The list of the most famous ENTJs includes Steve Jobs, Steve Ballmer, Steve Martin.
On top of that, ENTJs are systematic in their problem-solving approach.Their plans rarely fail; they are not just well-executed but also well-calculated. ENTJs evaluate problems from different perspectives, which allows them to have not only a plan B but a plan C, D, E and even G up their sleeves as well.
Commanders tend to be the bigger picture guys instead of focusing on minor details. They are the prominent visionaries of the business world. There’s a fair reason for such behaviour: ENTJs are very intelligent, knowledgeable and innovative… to the point where some of their employees can find them intimidating.
Despite being eloquent and amicable, ENTJs can come across as overly controlling and, therefore, unapproachable. A lot of ENTJ leaders have some form of God Complex and, subsequently, feel the need to be in full and undivided control of all the matters they believe are left unattended. Often, it is a lack of integration within the company that leads ENTJs to think that some tasks require their immediate attention and involvement.
Therefore, the tool that simplifies the lives of ENTJs is a CRM system that would link all the departments of the company together and show a clear and real-time picture of all the processes taking place within the company. ENTJs strive always to have access to up-to-date information about their organisation, and a CRM system gives them a chance to do that.
One of the best tools for ENTJs is NetHunt CRM.
One of the most significant advantages of NetHunt CRM is the fact that it is straightforward and easy to use: it fully integrates with your Gmail inbox and allows you to manage workflows effectively.
This correlates well with the ENTJ’s leadership styles, which makes the software the perfect fit for the Commanders. NetHunt CRM allows you to collaborate on tasks as a team and produce reports and forecasts to keep an eye on the work done. It’s terrific for tracking team and business performance, both of which are essential factors for ENTJs leaders.
NetHunt CRM offers a free 14-day trial, with the prices starting from $24 per month per user after.
INTJ: The Architect
INTJs go by the names Mastermind or Architect; fitting descriptions for this personality type. They’re analytical, observant and open-minded. INTJs balance carefully between the big picture and the little details needed to achieve global goals. This allows them to implement intricate business concepts without too much hassle and help from the side.
They have a talent for formulating complex theories that other types of leaders would not even consider. INTJs have a mighty mind; they absorb information like sponges and make fair use of it later. INTJs are naturally gifted with good memory and the ability to apply knowledge they obtain creatively. The most well-known INTJs in the business world are famous for their revolutionary ideas and intricate inventions.
The list of the most famous INTJs includes Elon Musk, Mark Zuckerberg, Walter “Heisenberg” White, Nikola Tesla.
INTJs are brimming with ideas and cannot wait to implement them in real life. However, while it’s amazing to have multiple projects going on, one of the drawbacks of INTJ personality is that they can get too involved with the stuff they are doing, getting too intense too quickly. Content overload is the INTJ’s worst enemy.
INTJs need to plan their business activities and schedule them to allow better consistency. The rule to remember as an INTJ businessperson is that you need to stick to the schedule instead of unloading all your content as soon as you come up with it in your genius mind.
For this reason, the most beneficial tool for INTJs is a postponed posting tool like Hootsuite.
Hootsuite allows you to run campaigns, schedule social media posts and plan out your strategy months in advance. Of course, it’s fully customisable to fit an idea or two, but overall it helps you to be more well-organised and coherent.
Hootsuite prices start from $18 per user per month.
The success of your enterprise is not predetermined by whether you fall into one of the entrepreneurial categories. But you know what does? How proactive, innovative and observant you are. Be more like INTJs and take all the advice from this article into consideration.
P.S. This post wasn’t sponsored by any of the fellow INTJs (ugh, I wish!)